How will the warm, wet winter affect California's 2017 vintage?

photo credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

photo credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

For the past few years, the skies over California seem to have been holding their rains back, only to unleash them all during the winter of 2017. No doubt you've seen the torrential, flood-producing rains on the news. But have you wondered how this weather is affecting this year's vines?

Forbes has the scoop on how this crazy winter weather will affect California's 2017 vintage.

Belle Ambiance Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

by J.T.

Happy Friday, lovelies. 

Care for a young Red (wine, not head) suggestion today?


Tasting Notes

Belle Ambience made a pretty good Cabernet Sauvignon in 2014. I can't quite place the nose—it's more than earthy, it smells a bit green, like fresh oregano. Oddly enough, it's super plummy palate, like blackberry jam, an intriguing combination. It's got a luscious body, nice and thick, medium-lowish alcohol, and glowing tannins that are long on the finish. It's young and bright, and mellows a bit if you let it open up for about 30 minutes or so.


Price Point

We can all agree with this one. I believe I got mine at my local wine merchant for about $9.99. Check out the vinter's website to see where you can find it.


Pairing Suggestions

Bright, acidic tomato flavors would go nicely with this young red: something along the lines of spaghetti with fresh marinara sauce, a caprese salad with lots of fresh basil, or paella would be scrumptious. 

Joel Gott Zinfandel 2013

by Amy

Looking for a lighter red under $20?

I think I may have something for you.

Joel Gott Zinfandel's 2013 vintage is a bit earthy on the nose, with hints of sage, rosemary, and plum—a bit fruity without being too jammy, thanks to some leather and tobacco notes. A little acid and silky tannins round out a nice, long finish. 

If you're looking for a lighter red this spring (maybe to go with some aromatic Cinco de Mayo fare?), this one's a good buy at $18.99.

Mark West Pinot Noir

by J.T.

Parties are always a bit of a crapshoot, aren't they?


Although you map out every detail, the variables you can't control slowly dismantle your best laid plans: someone needs the oven at 350 F for their spinach artichoke dip, even though you're finishing up your sausage balls at 425 F. A whopping three guests have brought the same dish, even though you policed the signup list like a hawk. And you forgot that everything but the veggie tray has gluten in it—which is unfortunate for your best friend with a gluten intolerance, who waves off your apologies with a sad stick of celery. 

But no matter how far the party strays from your good intentions, there's always one constant:

You can never have too much booze. 


If you're looking for a red to take to a big social gathering (i.e. Super Bowl parties and summer barbecues) when you're unsure what to bring, Mark West Pinot Noir would be a delightful accompaniment. The fruit forward flavors of strawberry and cherry cola, along with soft tannins and a nice bite of acid, complement meats of all kinds—cheeseburgers, bbq chicken, grilled salmon—along with a good cheese plate. It's a light-bodied red that goes well with so many foods and palates, you really can't go wrong with this one.

And lucky for us: it's only $10.99!


Like this post? Share it!

Clos du Bois Pinot Grigio 2014

by Amy

When it comes to my drink choices, sometimes I'm a broken record. But I don't really mind.
 

Honestly, this isn't a recent phenomenon: I've always been this way. I could quote The Little Mermaid word for word when I was 5 because it was the only movie I'd watch for days on end. Even now, if I like something, even after the 50th time of indulging in it, I'm still gonna love it as much as I did the first time.

This is a great trait to have when you're broke and you don't mind eating beans and rice for days on end. It's not so great when you binge-watch the night away instead of folding the mountain of laundry that you allow to sit in the dryer for an embarrassingly long time. (talking about a "friend" here, guys)

Don't get me wrong: I enjoy trying new things. But some nights, all I want to do is curl up with a nice, comfortable favorite, whether it's a TV show or a drink. And I generally know which varietals are my favorites: Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling really turn my crank. So on this blog, I'm going to do my best to try not to be a broken record, but bear with me if I post about these gems a bit more than some other varietals. 

P.S. You have full permission to suggest new varietals for me to try. In fact, I'd rather you speak now than forever hold your piece!

ANYWAY. Onto this lovely Californian Pinot Grigio.

Clos du Bois' 2014 Pinot Grigio was everything I love about this varietal: it's light, crisp, and just delightful to drink. There's lots of candied lemon on the nose, with notes of grapefruit, ginger, and tiny bit of grass on the palate. This isn't too acidic, so I think it'd be phenomenal paired with sushi or some really aromatic Thai food, like Tom Kha Gai or a green curry. I would order it again in a heartbeat. 

And good news: it's only $11.99


Like this post? Share it!